After conquering Mt Everest with indomitable spirit and grit, Arunima Sinha -- the first woman amputee to achieve this feat -- now wants to make a mark by doing something, which very few have done.
She has expressed her desire to set up a multi-facility sports academy in Unnao for physically challenged athletes. The 27-year-old athlete, who arrived here on Sunday, said she had already sought assistance from the state government in this regard. The academy would be named Pandit Chandra Shekhar Vikalang Khel Academy.
"In September 2012, chief minister Akhilesh Yadav had promised to help me in setting up the academy. I will pursue the case with him again," said Arunima, who visited HT’s Lucknow office.
"We have purchased some land in Unnao. So, the academy can be set up there. I hope state government fulfils its promise," she added.
Arunima, who hails from Ambedkar Nagar, and billed as a former national-level volleyball player, lost her right leg after being allegedly thrown off a moving train near Bareilly by unidentified hoodlums while resisting a robbery in April 2011. The Railways had however contested the claim besides questioning her national player status.
Powered by sheer grit and determination, the 26-year-old girl successfully scaled the 8,848 metre-high world’s highest summit on May 21. Supported by Tata Steel Adventure Foundation and trained under Bachendri Pal, who was the first Indian woman to achieve the feat, Arunima completed her expedition from Kathmandu to the top of the peak in 52 days.
Sharing her journey from being thrown on to the railway tracks to conquering the highest peak in the world, Arunima said, "The day I lost my leg, I took a pledge to make a mark by doing something which very few have done," she said.
Barely a week after Arunima achieved the feat of scaling Mt Everest with an amputated leg, a Hollywood film producer approached her family with an offer of making a film on her life.